New investment: Pigment

Business planning is, of course, one of the vital functions in the enterprise: hard to run a successful company beyond a certain size without a clear sense for objectives and resources.

Yet, to this day, business planning is a often a cumbersome, rigid and time-intensive process. Typically led by the finance team, it is largely done through email, excel spreadsheets and meetings. In large companies involving multiple business units and geographies, the process can take several months. As a result, business planning tends to effectively happen once a year.

To be sure, this is not a new problem, and over the decades, a whole industry of software solutions appeared to address those problems. Yet, the current leaders in the space were created 15-20 years ago, largely in the pre-cloud era.

Meanwhile, the world has been changing at an increasingly fast pace, particularly in the last few years: the volume of data flowing through the enterprise has exploded; the number of SaaS tools used in any enterprise has grown dramatically; and the need for the enterprise to become hyper reactive to customer demands and changing situations is become clearer every day.

Enter Pigment, a fresh take on the business planning software world.

  • At its core, Pigment runs on a very powerful data engine, which enables it to ingest data from many sources, and crunch it in real time. This in particular enables users to run iterative “what if” scenarios, both at the department and enterprise level, and run flexible, proactive, continuous business planning
  • As a cloud-native product, it plays well with modern software infrastructure, including SaaS tools
  • It was designed with a key focus on UI/UX, to make it approachable by a variety of users without requiring hours of training.
  • Pigment was designed as a fundamentally collaborative platform, since all parts of the company need to be involved in business planning for it to be successful

Pigment has stellar co-founders.

  • Co-CEO Eléonore Crespo is a former data analyst at Google and investor at Index Ventures
  • Co-CEO Romain Niccoli is the former CTO and co-founder of Criteo – the ad-tech company that is one of Europe’s most prominent tech success stories, following a successful NASDAQ IPO in 2013 and annual revenues of over $2 billion USD. Together they’ve assembled a very impressive team of top notch engineers and industry specialists.

Today, I’m excited to announce that FirstMark has invested in both the seed round of Pigment (alongside Frst) and its more recent Series A (alongside Blossom), all within the last 12 months. See press coverage from TechCrunch and Forbes.

The company is very closely aligned with some of our favorite themes at FirstMark. Obviously, I’m big believer in the rise of the data-driven, intelligent enterprise. Over the years, we have been very excited by collaborative SaaS software, including the worlds of design (InVision), data science (Dataiku) and video (Frame.io). We have also been investing behind the rise of European startups that aspire to be global category leaders from inception, and have enjoyed helping them being successful in the US in particular.

Pigment is officially live and open for business in both Europe and the US, with a fast-growing list of customers across industries.

For more information, go their brand new website, follow them on Twitter or say hello at contact@gopigment.com

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